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ASU Baseball: Defense fuels late comeback in win at Arizona

The Sun Devils worked their way out of a 4-0 hole en route to a 6-5 win.

The Territorial Cup Shifted To Hi Corbett Field In Tucson On Wednesday
The Territorial Cup Shifted To Hi Corbett Field In Tucson On Wednesday
Sun Devil Athletics

Leading 4-1 in the bottom of the fifth, Arizona's Zach Gibbons rounded third with the intention of adding another run on top of its three run advantage. However, Jake Peevyhouse had other plans.

The left fielder's laser of a throw beat Gibbons to the plate, ended the inning and ignited a comeback that would lead to Arizona State's third win of the season against its rivals from down south. The victory clinched the Territorial Cup series point for the Sun Devils in baseball.

The Wildcats jumped out to a big lead on Wednesday night in Tucson, tattooing the Sun Devil pitching staff for four runs in the second frame. Starter David Graybill and reliever Eli Lingos walked the first four batters of the inning, and by the time it was over the home team had the maroon and gold in a four-run hole.

ASU got started on the comeback trail in the fourth when David Greer led things off with a single. He would then come around to score on a sacrifice fly off the bat of RJ Ybarra.

The game took a cataclysmic turn in the sixth inning. Using the momentum from their stellar defensive play in the previous frame, the Sun Devils added a four spot of their own in their half of the sixth inning. Greer and Brian Serven started things off with consecutive base hits, and Trever Allen cut the deficit in half with another single. The offense was far from done, however.

Joey Bielek came up next, and the seven-hole hitter laid down a perfect bunt. The ball was misplayed by Arizona's pitcher, who tried to cut down the lead runner at third. The throw was a poor one, and Greer ended up scoring all the way from second on the error. The bottom of the order continued to produce, bringing home two more runs to give the visiting team a 5-4 lead before the Wildcats finally got out of the jam.

A pair of doubles gave ASU an insurance run in the seventh, and the bullpen continued to roll with a two run lead until the bottom of the ninth.

A one out double off closer Ryan Burr kept hope alive for Arizona, and Bobby Dalbec brought the run home with an RBI single to left field. Burr would settle down, however, getting a pop out and grounder to short to end the threat and give the Sun Devils the 6-5 victory.

The save was Burr's 12th of the season. Ryan Hingst (3-1) earned the win after throwing three scoreless innings out of the bullpen. Wildcat reliever Austin Schnabel (2-3), whose throwing error was the lowlight of a group of mistakes in the sixth inning, ended up getting charged with the loss.

ASU improved to 26-11 with the win, while Arizona slipped to 24-14.

Next up for the maroon and gold is a three game series with Tennessee Tech back at Phoenix Municipal Stadium. The nonconference set will begin on Friday night at 6:30 PM.